Back To Square One: GOP To Block Pelosi Bid For $2,000 Checks, Will Offer CR Separating State From Foreign Aid

Update (1920ET): Following Pelosi’s earlier plea to Republicans to agree to a bill calling for $2,000 stimulus checks which she will put to a vote in the House on Tuesday, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said he would object to a bill boosting stimulus payments for individuals to $2,000, Bloomberg reports citing a person who participated in a private call with GOP House members. Furthermore, the Republican also plans to offer a new Continuing Resolution separating state and foreign aid from the omnibus. And since McCarthy’s position will see objection from Dems, we are – as CNBC’s Kayla Tausche puts it – “Back at square one.”

December 23, 2020

If the measure fails on Thursday, which it now appears certain to do, Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal will introduce a new bill, called the Cash Act, to be put on the floor Monday. That bill would codify the larger stimulus payments, Pelosi told Democrats in a private call on Wednesday, according to a person on the call.

Trump’s demand for bigger checks came alongside various complaints about the tens of billions in pork, including hundreds of millions in foreign aid, contained in the $2.3 trillion ($900 billion in Covid-19 relief with $1.4 trillion in government funding) bill, which was passed with big bipartisan support on Monday despite virtually nobody reading the 5,500+ pages of the full legislation.

If Trump does not sign the approved legislation by Dec. 28, the government may shut down after midnight due to lack of approved funding: “The entire country knows that it is urgent for the president to sign this bill, both to provide the coronavirus relief and to keep government open,” Pelosi said in her letter.

Before McCarthy’s comment, Pelosi said she planned to convene the House at 9 a.m. Thursday, although that may now be moot. If her unanimous-consent request is blocked, Pelosi would then need to decide whether they want to the bring it before the entire House for a roll-call vote.

As we explained earlier, stocks mostly shrugged off the news on the complications in Washington and on the economy because as Vital Knowledge founder Adam Crisafulli wrote, Trump’s criticism and veto threat, “won’t alter the macro narrative” and that “even if Trump actually vetoes (unlikely) and Congress fails to override it (also unlikely, given the stimulus/budget passed with veto-proof majorities), this will only delay the inevitable by 27 days (which would be unfortunate, but not material).”

“The big debate isn’t whether the $900b stimulus gets passed into law but instead if it represents a ‘down payment’ or the last major fiscal response to the pandemic,” with the outcome of Georgia Senate races in early January playing a “big role in answering that question.”

Raymond James analyst Ed Mills’ base case remains that the bill passed by Congress will become law, as the package passed both the House and the Senate with veto-proof mar….

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